About that deadline for Syria to produce a list of its WMDs… Obama would like to inform Vladimir that he is willing to be flexible about it. Also anything else Vladimir suggests.
The ambitious U.S.-Russian deal to eliminate Syria’s chemical weapons, hailed as a diplomatic breakthrough just days ago, hit its first delay Wednesday with indications that the Syrian government will not submit an inventory of its toxic stockpiles and facilities to international inspectors by this weekend’s deadline.
The State Department signaled that it would not insist that Syrian President Bashar Assad produce the list Saturday, the end of a seven-day period spelled out in the framework deal that Washington and Moscow announced last weekend in Geneva.
Marie Harf, a State Department spokeswoman, said Wednesday that “our goal is to see forward momentum” by Saturday, not the full list. “We’ve never said it was a hard and fast deadline.”
As it turns out, Syria did get it done. So Obama Inc. showed some flexibility for nothing.
A senior Obama administration official said Friday that the United States was encouraged by the initial inventory that the Syrian government had submitted of its chemical weapons arsenal.
“We were pleasantly surprised by the completeness of their declaration,” said the official, who declined to be identified because he was not authorized to speak publicly on the matter.
“It was better than expected,” he added.
When you expect to get used as a human pinata by Putin, reality can sometimes exceed your pathetic expectations.